Octavio Karbank writes,
Unquestionably two of the premiere science fiction franchises on the planet, the Alien and Predator licenses are also among the most popular. For years, lovers of horror and sci-fi have found a perfect combination of the two in the worlds of Predator and the terrifying surrealist nightmare that is Alien.
Each has spawned an entire line of movies, comics, toys, and novels, in a desperate attempt to satisfy the unquenchable hunger of the franchises’ fans. Even the casual enthusiast can’t help but wonder at the marvel and mystery of these two murderous alien races, constantly racing to seek out answers about their origins and read more on the horror they inspire.
While it would’ve been easy to rely solely on the films to provide a story, fans have been lucky enough to receive novelization of the universes of Alien and Predator. As they became shared universes, it only added fuel to all the potential stories that had yet to be told.
At this year’s San Diego Comic Con panel on the Alien and Predator extended universe, we got to hear what some of the writers of various Alien and Predator stories had to say. Moderated by Steve Saffel, the panel included writers Jonathan Maberry, Bryan Thomas Schmidt, Seanan McGuire, and Scott Sigler.
In talking about their new Alien anthology, Aliens: Bug Hunt, they also spoke about the upcoming, all-new Predator anthology, titled Predator: If It Bleeds. Coming out sometime this fall, Predator: If It Bleeds will feature a whole range of Predator-related stories, further expanding on the Predator mythos. One of the stories that is sure to garner interest, is a story written as a sequel to the film Predator II.
In regards to the Alien anthology, one of the stories mentioned that stood out is told from the perspective of a wounded Alien, something that hasn’t really been done before. From there, there was discussion on the sentience of the creatures; there is a primal nature to the Aliens and they’re very much like wild animals. Apparently, 20th Century Fox has said that the Aliens can’t have an official language. Scott Sigler, the writer of the story, talked to one of his Army buddies, and researched how a Special Forces unit might operate, likening them to Aliens, if they could not communicate with words.
Moving on, there was talk on how to make a Predator or Alien story work, with the general consensus being that despite the monsters, it still has to be a very human experience. That’s what drives the story; you have to ask what you’d do, were you in that situation.
The panelists talking on how Alan Dean Foster is working on a novel that’ll serve as a prequel to Alien: Covenant which comes out this Fall. It’ll set the stage for everything leading up to the ship going out to look for a new world. The idea is an intriguing one, as it reveals what state the planet would have to be in, in order for us to seek life elsewhere.
Finally, the panelists reflected on what they’d like to see or explore with the expanded universe of the Predators. Ultimately, while the Predators are a tribal, warrior race, there still logically have to be members of their society that do the farming and keep their civilization turning. What’s that like and what would a world of pre-industrial farming Predators look like?
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